Workers at the National Railway Museum are to be balloted on industrial action in a dispute over pay.

The Prospect union said its members at the Science Museum Group – which includes the NRM, Science & Industry Museum in Manchester, and National Science & Media Museum in Bradford, will vote in the next few weeks on whether to launch a campaign of action.

The union said the move followed the imposition of a below-inflation pay rise of 1.5%, claiming that workers had suffered a 13% real-terms pay cut since 2010.


Prospect negotiations officer Sharon Brown said:

  • Our members in the Science Museum Group love what they do but they cannot carry on with year after year of real-terms pay cuts.

    How can they be expected to provide stability for their families under these conditions? The Science Museum is one of the top tourist attractions in the country – people will be astonished at how poorly its staff are paid.

Below the living wage

Photograph © Allan Harris on Flickr
“For years our members’ pay has risen by less than inflation and the imposition this year of yet another below-inflation, 1.5% pay rise is especially galling when the director has seen his pay increase by a third in just four years,” Ms Brown added.

“At the bottom of the pay scale workers are unacceptably still earning well below the Real Living Wage.”


A spokeswoman for the Science Museum Group said:

  • We made a pay offer that we believe is reasonable and affordable given the challenging overall financial picture, which included additional increases for the lowest paid roles.

    In light of the positive steps we have taken, we are disappointed that Prospect have decided to ballot their members for industrial action.